Saturday, November 10, 2012

Paying for Sanity, The Incompetence After the Storm & Why Can't We Get Burlseque at the Bar?

This is a lesson I've had to remind myself of tons of times. As a frugal person by nature, I tend to be very picky about spending money & have refused to spend what I feel is too much on something. My husband has a similar attitude; that's probably one reason our marriage works so well. I don't have to fight with anyone who spends money like a drunken sailor who believes he's never getting laid ever again so has to spend a fortune on entertaining the hottest girl in the room so he won't die without having gotten that quickie along with getting that good, stiff drink since they're no longer making that brand of liquor. We're huge believers in frugality.

At the same time, though I've found there are times when it's okay to spend more money. One of those times was today for gasoline.

You may have read about NYC's gas lines & recent start of rationing. I was awakened Tuesday morning by horn honking from stopped cars that were in a gas line on my block. If they'd not suspended parking that day & my car wasn't already on the proper side to avoid being ticked, I would not have been able to move my car to the proper side. Those parking tickets aren't cheap.

I also saw the craziness in walking around my neighborhood & I'm having none of it. Fortunately, we had more gas in our car pre-Sandy that I thought we had. This meant the freedom of choice. I'd heard there were no lines in Connecticut or near a relative in New Jersey (where I understand gas rationing is still going on but has actually made a difference).

I decided to go to Connecticut to get gas & got up at 7 this morning to make that happen. Bear in mind that lately, I've been waking up around 12/1 p.m. (Sandy also screwed up my sleep schedule). I had to go today in order to be able to go on a trip that's been planned for months. Getting there & back was so much easier, let me tell you.

The station near my house had a line when I left for Connecticut & when I got back at around 9-9:15 this morning, the line had started to take over the main road I had to travel on. A normally 2 lane road was now 1 lane. I paid 50 cents more per gallon but I am more than happy to have paid it, for many reasons.

1. Not sitting in a 30 minutes if I'm lucky line. I'm not a person you want doing that since I've got a temper & if you mess with me, there will be problems. I also never claimed to be a paragon of patience.
2. Not paying increased tolls to get to New Jersey.
3. Not having to drive in Manhattan to go to that part of New Jersey. My route was all highway.
4. Being more familiar with Connecticut since I used to live there. I also know Connecticut doesn't have traffic circles or areas where you can't make left turns.

If this were a credit card commercial, it would end with Saving time & preventing unnecessary arrests: priceless. It's like "Wow, having lived in Connecticut for 3 years & driving around various areas of the state came in handy." That drive also helped me refresh my driving legs for the upcoming road trip & means we can actually take that road trip.

To avoid a gas line, you bet I'll do this. Essentially, it's paying for comfort. I found the same to be true when I took Amtrak on business class. That experience is why I'm not doing anything unless I can pay to get business class or not deal with crazy BS that's just going to raise my blood pressure & feel like Chinese water torture. Or for an analogy closer to home, maybe I should say I try to avoid situations akin to having a thong stuck in your butt & not being able to move it because you're at a work function or business meeting where there's no bathroom in sight or you're stuck with some irritating jerk you're just pretending to like who refuses to mingle.

I tend to resent paying more money for such things but today, I had no problem with it. Extraordinary circumstances & all. Can't believe Bloomberg claims this is going to continue for "a few more weeks." All I can say is he'd better be suspending alternate side parking restrictions while that's going on since I'm not waiting for a gas line to leave my block so I can move my car to the proper place. The street has enough room for one car on it so forget passing anyone; the only way you'll get people to move there is with a weapon or a death threat.

I'm also gratified to hear that people in Long Island started protesting at LIPA's headquarters because of the slow moving progress to restore power. My husband said LIPA is worthless & is glad he doesn't have to deal with them. Most people I know have either long since gotten their power back or never lost it in the first place (including in Long Island). I want their leadership to get nailed by the governor & hopefully forced to pay heavy fines. I'm sure those people without power would also like to see them serve some jail time.

You know, maybe the protestors without power should go camp out at the board members' homes & say "Until you restore our power, we're not moving." Might light some fires under a few behind if you did that, don't you think? Wouldn't it be ironic if they called the cops & the cops who showed up were also without power & sided with the protestors? Or maybe if the cops were human beings & agreed with this act? Gee, desperate times. Anyone get the memo on that?

I can't imagine the management there is sitting with no electricity at this point & I'd bet money they aren't.

Anyhow, another time I have to tell myself it's okay to spend money is if paying more means higher quality. There's also paying for things you don't already have or if you need a replacement. I'm very much of the school of using things until you can't anymore. I feel it's wasteful to get rid of something that still works or still fits you if it's not in disrepair. Had to reluctantly get rid of a rain coat I still can't find a viable replacement for due to it being in disrepair & despite my efforts in sewing up holes. I'd just get new holes in it. That still pisses me off & I can't find a replacement for it in my size. No one seems to have it & I adamantly refuse to get something that looks frumpy, boring or dull. Nor do I get things that look like what everyone else is wearing; kill me for having an aesthetic & caring about my appearance.

In other news, I got a part in the next City Bar show & guess what I'm playing: a "lady of the evening." I did get the one line I asked for & will get some solo singing in a song. This is probably the only venue where I can play that role without worrying about exploitation, losing credibility in my industry or getting a grievance filed against me. I also have to find out the time period of the show so I know how to do costuming. I have ideas; got the boots already though they aren't stripper heels. They come up pretty high on my leg & I've got lots of short skirts.

One thing I know is that I can't dress like I normally do. For one thing, no one's ever mistaken me for a prostitute (even in NC & Atlanta) & I've seen NYC prostitutes. They dress much more revealing than I do.

My husband's wary about it but I pointed out that I can't dress in something I'd wear normally (especially in the summer) since that's not honest to the role or the scene if it's present day. I most certainly will make sure nothing's going to be coming out unexpectedly (otherwise, I'd feel too self-conscious) & I've been on stage in all sorts of getup over the years. I've been in a swimsuit & reminded him that I did a song for my law school talent night one year in a lingerie top (a long camisole top that had a bra built in & was in the lingerie section of the store I got it from). We were dating at that time & he did not play Fashion Police over it.

If I get to dress as a modern day prostitute, I'll be thrilled since it will be an opportunity for rebellion. When I read the role, I was in immediately since I thought "In this stuffy forum, getting to do that & get away with it would be awesome!" Plus, no one would get to accuse me of hiding my body in shame or because I have scars or something that embarrasses me. I'm always trying to find ways to rebel in that atmosphere & man, if that's not the ultimate way to do so I'm not sure what is. There's also the stretch of my acting muscles if I get to play it honestly. If it's not present day, I'll have to buy stuff.

I've often thought about how cool it would be if we had burlesque at a bar association event; not all the shows involve nudity & most of the acts I've seen had zero nudity. It's also an art form & does require some talent I don't have. The outfit I have in mind would certainly lend to more clothing than most burlesque performers end up in at the end of their acts. Plus, burlesque is certainly not the same as stripping & only an uncultured idiot who doesn't know anything about it would say it was. There's a different format & tone in burlesque than there is a strip show. I also don't think a burlesque performer will give you a lap dance no matter how much money you offer her (or him, but mostly her). The men would probably still be titillated enough to show up though at the Liberty Belle Spectacular, it was mostly women watching the burlesque performances.

Now to fully enjoy Car 54, Where Are You? Hopefully, I'll be awake enough to watch Dobie Gillis after this. I like both of these shows since they are funny as hell & wish they had good DVD sets. If they did, we'd own them in a heartbeat. I'm sad that Car 54 had cruddy DVD sets. Why can't METv show their full schedule in my area?! I have it on DVD but I'd watch Get Smart on there or see about watching The Donna Reed Show since I've not seen it since the late '80s when we had cable & Nick at Nite. Why can't they show these programs at more convenient times than 2 & 3 a.m. on Saturday nights? I hate the stupid infomercials they show for half the day when we could be watching MeTV shows, considering we don't have Antenna TV.

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